Happy This Week (and Last!)

You guys. I have so many blog posts in my head and it drives me INSANE that I’m not making the time to write them. I’m working on it.

First up…my genetics test results came back and I do not carry the BRCA 1 or 2 gene!! Woohoo! It’s such a relief to know that, at this point, I won’t need any more surgery. It was nice to get some good news!!!

I’m back to getting manicures every three weeks and I LOVE IT! I’ve missed it so much. My nail lady, Sandra, is back too so it’s perfect.

How on earth did I miss Scandal all these years??? I caught an episode last week in between Grey’s and Murder and was hooked. Fast forward two seasons later on Netflix and I’m hooked. It’s a little over the top (obviously, it’s Shonda!) but I am loving it.

I had a really great week of teaching. Yeah!

My therapy for my eating disorder is going very well. It’s tough but it’s really difficult to let go of something that’s been part of my life since I was 11. I’m literally retraining my 39-year-old brain. I’m proud of myself for doing it.

I love my coffee and ANTM nights with my Mom!

My BFF and I have been so crazy busy but we’ve been trying really hard to fit in quick walks or visits and these save my sanity. So thankful for my person.

I’m reading books again!!

New TV is back! You guys know I love my TV shows! So far they’ve all been really good. What are you watching?

Starbucks seriously helps me through my week. I definitely think there’s something in their coffee that makes you addicted though.

I am getting more and more hair every day! I feel like it’s taking forever but when I look at pictures, I see that it’s coming along. I had hat hair the other day!!

What has made you happy lately?

Happy This Week

We had gorgeous weather this week in Ohio!!! It was one of those weeks where you just breathe in and feel happy to be alive.

Project Runway is the best show ever. I get so happy for Friday morning, even though I’m dragging and ready for the weekend, because I know I have a show waiting for me on my iPad!! I’m a dork, don’t judge me.

The boys had four soccer games last weekend and did awesome. I just love watching them play and do something they love so much.

Olivia started her period and I didn’t spend the whole week under the covers. I’m counting that as a win. More on this later, I promise.

Matthew turned 10! We had a great family party and we went out to dinner with a couple of his friends on his actual birthday day. I think he had a wonderful birthday!

Every Tuesday I take all the boys to soccer (we carpool) and then Olivia and I go hang out with my Mom for a couple of hours. She makes us dinner, we watch America’s Next Top Model and just hang out. I love it.

Matt and I are going out on a date this weekend! It’s been way too long.


What made you happy this week?

Happy This Week

I got a manicure from my favorite nail lady! She’s back in business and so am I. I love getting my nails done.

Does anyone watch Luther? I just discovered this show and I love it. I’m on season 3!

We had a fun weekend last weekend. We went to the fair, went out on the boat, had dinner with my BFF and even relaxed a bit. It was so nice before all the crazy of September starts.

Two of my friends brought me flowers this week. It was so sweet and brightened my day.

My students are awesome. They are kind and sweet and hard workers. I was blessed with another great group this year.

My Mom and I get to watch America’s Next Top Model together each week while the boys are at soccer. I love spending time with her.

Matthew’s birthday is this weekend and he’s so excited. Remember the excitement of your 10th birthday???

Olivia is having an awesome school year so far. It makes me VERY happy!!!

My hair is getting longer each week! I know, duh! But it’s amazing to have hair again…even just a little bit. I miss having hair so much. I can’t wait until it’s totally back. I miss my eyelashes too…but at least I have eyebrows again!

I had the first pumpkin spice latte of the season. It was so delicious.

It’s getting cooler. I’m so ready for fall weather!

What made you happy this week?

Cancer Chronicles X: Emotional

Sorry I’ve been MIA lately (to the few of you still reading…Hi, Mom!) but the start of the school year is insane. I’ve barely had time to sleep!

I am so much better physically. My radiation burns have healed, I’m not in constant pain and the fatigue is getting better each day. When I have my treatment every three weeks, it’s not too bad. I’m a little achy, a lot tired, but not sick. I can function. It’s a big difference from the spring.

But emotionally? I’m a hot mess.

I’ve struggled with an eating disorder my whole life and I’ve never really been treated for it. I think I have it under control and then BAM something like cancer happens and it rears its ugly head. I’m really struggling in this area right now. I know it seems ridiculous that I’m in the middle of a cancer battle and I give a shit about my weight but it’s not a rational disorder. I’m really trying to love myself through this. To be patient with my body as it recovers from being through hell and back over the last seven months and still anticipating the seven months it has left to be bombarded with chemicals that feel like they’re trying to kill it. I’m sure my body is constantly thinking “WTF IS SHE DOING TO US???” and so I’m trying to appreciate all that it is doing for me right now. But that’s easier said than done when you already struggle in this area.

Three women in my community have passed away in the past month from cancer that started out as breast cancer. One of them was a dear friend of a family member. She just finished chemo one year ago and thought she was fine. These stories haunt me and scare me. I know I could get hit by a bus tomorrow, but that doesn’t matter. I. have. cancer. Something that people die from all the time. Something that people use as a “could be worse” as in “well, at least it’s not cancer!”. I have it. I’m fighting it. And I’m trying not to live in a world where all I think about is the fact that it could come back. I can’t live that way. That’s not who I am. But at the moment, it’s really hard for me to ignore the voice that’s telling me “it could come back!”.

I have glimpses of my “pre-cancer self” here and there but I’m not myself yet. I’m just not sure how to get my mojo back I guess. Again, I’m trying to be patient with myself. I’m trying to give myself credit for all I am going through and trying to realize that it’s ok if I’m not myself for a bit. Maybe I won’t ever be “myself” again. Maybe I’m permanently changed. Maybe that’s not a bad thing. I’m just not sure. I do know that I’m usually a happy, positive person and I’m trying really hard to stay that way. But it’s not easy.

I think part of the problem is I’m just worn out. This is hard work physically and emotionally. It’s a lot of pain and fatigue and appointments and phone calls and paperwork and worry and doctors. It’s just heavy. I’m just tired. And I get overwhelmed by how much farther I have to go and the fact that it might not be enough.

I keep telling myself I’m a fighter and, no matter what comes my way, I’ll handle it. But sometimes I just wish I didn’t have to.

Happy This Week

I started getting my nails done again and it makes me so happy!

We are all ready for back to school. I started on Thursday and my new students start this week. I’m really excited to meet them all! My kids start this week too…they are not looking forward to waking up early!

Our 7th annual golf outing was a success. Thank you to everyone who supported us!

Project Runway and America’s Top Model started this week. I love those shows!

The boys started soccer this week. I love watching them play and seeing them excited about playing.

I missed my work friends and am glad to see them every day!

What made you happy this week?


***I was riding my bike today, listening to this song, and felt as though I needed to re-share this post with you. I guess iTunes knew I needed the reminder of just how special my Olivia is to the world…and to me.***

I don’t know about you, but there’s little I enjoy more than a new song that speaks to me in some way.

I had to start with this one. I have to be honest and say I don’t really like Natalie Merchant in general. But this song speaks right to my heart. Even if you’ve heard it before, listen again along with the lyrics. When I first paid attention to the words, it blew me away. It brings me to tears every time I listen to it. I just think of one little girl who is a miracle and changed my world forever…Olivia…and how this song must have been written just for her and me.

Doctors have come from distant cities
Just to see me
Stand over my bed they’re disbelieving
What they’re seeing

They say, I must be one of the wonders
Of God’s own creation
And as far as they see they can offer
No explanation

Newspapers ask such intimate questions
They want confessions
They turn to my head, they try to steal the glory
Of my story

They say, I must be one of the wonders
Of God’s own creation
And as far as they see they can offer
No explanation

I believe
Fate, fate smiled and destiny
Laughed as she came to my cradle

“Know this child will be able”

And laughed as my body she lifted
“Know this child will be gifted…
With love, with patience and with faith…
She’ll make her way, make her way

People see me, I’m a challenge
To your balance, I’m over your heads
How I confound you
And astound you

To know , I must be one of the wonders
Of God’s own creation
And as far as they see they can offer
No explanation

I believe
Fate, fate smile and destiny
Laughed as she came to my cradle

“Know this child will be able”

And laughed as my body she lifted

“Know this child will be gifted”

And laughed as she came to my mother

“Know this child will not suffer
With love, with patience and with faith
She’ll make her way, make her way
Make her way, make her way”

The line about “laughed as she came to my mother…know this child will not suffer. With love, with patience and with faith…she’ll make her way” brings me to tears every time. I need to listen to this song more often because it centers me. Is there a song that “gets” you every time?

Happy This Week

So much for my goal of writing more often this summer, huh? I honestly don’t even know where the summer went…I can’t believe we’re back to school soon!

I had my last radiation treatment on Wednesday! It feels soooooo good to be done! It was very cute though…the ladies that did my treatment asked me to come back and visit. I probably will when I’m there for a check up. It made me feel good though!

My BFF and I had a girls’ day to celebrate. We got pedicures, went out to lunch and went shopping and then got the kids and hung out for the evening. It was an awesome day and the perfect way to celebrate.

Matt and I went to the Harry Connick Jr. concert at the zoo on Tuesday with our friends Robin and Tom. My friends Robin and Alexis got me the tickets for my birthday. Harry is amazing in concert! We went out to dinner beforehand too. The whole night was so much fun!

I’ve been riding my new bike almost every day and I love it. It definitely makes me happy!

We got our new carpet and most of our new furniture. It looks like a whole new house!

The boys went to “cancer camp” this week. It’s Camp Kesem and it’s for kids whose parents have or had cancer. It was Matthew’s first time away at home (besides Grandma’s) and he was very nervous. The counselors have been posting pictures every day and it looks like they’re having a great time. It feels like they’ve been gone FOREVER and I’m so excited to pick them up today!!!

Olivia had a fun week being the “only child”. We took her golfing, which she loved, we went out on my in-laws boat and went swimming, we did puppet shows and she even had a “picnic” lunch in the basement while watching Dumbo on the projector. She missed the boys but enjoyed the 2 on 1 time!

My friends Kim and Kara made us awesome dinners this week. I also got cards from my friends Glenn and Terri. Thank you!!

Olivia’s Open golf outing is this weekend. It looks like the weather will be perfect. Fingers crossed for a great turnout!

What made you happy this week?

Cancer Chronicles IX: Radiation is OVER!

I finished my last radiation treatment this week!!! I had to go to the hospital every day, Monday through Friday, at 8:30 a.m. for 21 days straight and it’s finally over!!! I am so thankful to have that piece behind me.

My radiation therapists were so sweet and kind and took such good care of me. I am very worn out and sore which is to be expected. It will get worse over the next couple of weeks before it gets better because radiation is cumulative and keeps going after your treatment. But the good news is I should start feeling “back to normal” in about a month. I already feel like a huge weight is lifted just being done with this piece.

Now all I have left is chemo every three weeks until March, genetics test (fingers crossed for good news), heart tests every three months and I start taking my daily pill soon which I will take for the next 5-10 years. That all seems pretty “easy” compared to the last 7 months. It still feels like a long road ahead but definitely one I can handle.

I got a new bike about a week ago and I’ve been riding it almost every day. It’s my new favorite thing to do for exercise. I haven’t been able to lift weights this week because my left side is too sore so it’s been nice to have my new bike instead! Hopefully I’ll be back in the gym next week.

School starts next week and I’m a little nervous about being exhausted. My body is just very worn out at this point. But that’s what sick days are for, right? I’m so thankful I still have some left! I’m excited to get back to work, even though I’m a little nervous about keeping up.

It feels so good to say radiation is over!

Happy This Week

I made it! Matt’s been gone fishing for over a week and I survived! Woo hoo!!

I am done with 5 more radiation treatments and one more chemo. One step closer to being done!

I didn’t gain any weight this week!

I had a few friends over on Monday to hang out. It is always fun to just sit and chat and drink wine.

My MIL, SIL and BFF all pitched in to help me out this week while Matt was gone. I’m so thankful for them!

My Mom and the kids and I had a great time on our overnight to Frankenmuth last weekend.

Who else watches Hannibal? I finished season 1 this week. Holy cow is it good!

My friends Amy and Julie made us wonderful dinners this week. I was extra thankful for these since Matt was gone!

My friend, Ashley, brought us dinner too and came and hung out with me for a while on Wednesday so we could catch up. I miss her!

I watched the movie This is 40 again this week. Man, I love that movie.

What made you happy this week?

Happy This Week

Is anyone else watching Astronaut Wives Club? I am loving this show. I love the retro clothes and food and houses. It’s a very cool show.

I’m a third of the way done with radiation!

I had the most wonderful day at the spa on Tuesday. It’s a program for people going through cancer treatment and they totally spoil you the whole day. I had a whirlpool bath, a massage, a facial, a mani and pedi, a haircut (LOL! She buzzed my incoming hair to even it up!) and scalp massage and then they did my makeup. It was such an amazing day.

I went out to dinner with my work friends on Wednesday. It was so nice to catch up and see them all. I miss eating lunch with them.

I had another great golf night with my BFF and her family.

My friend, Kathy, made us a delicious dinner this week. Thank you!

My Mom, the kids and I are going to Frankenmuth for the weekend. We are all so excited to get away and have some fun.

What made you happy this week?